No more mandatory skirts and makeup for Virgin Atlantic

Posted by Gabrielle Jacobs on 5 March 2019

The Virgin Atlantic airline, whose route passes through SA, has recently reformed its dress policy for female cabin crew – female flight attendants are no longer required to wear makeup or the airline’s characteristic tight, red skirts.

While this change is welcome and seen as a step forward. The airline, which was founded by Sir Richard Branson, has made this change in a bid to allow its female employees to be more comfortable on the job.

Female flight attendants may forgo the skirt and request trousers now (not just with special permission, as was formerly the case). If they do choose to wear makeup, they are required to stick to Virgin’s prescribed palettes.

Flight attendants in training. Image: In Pictures Ltd./Corbis via Getty Images

The airline industry is gradually working towards a more equal working environment as many consider gender pay gaps in salaries, maternity policies and female employees’ dress codes.

Among other airlines who have relaxed their rules slightly, British Airways also now allows female crew to wear trousers, but makeup is still a must.

The change in Virgin’s policy is said to have come from a process of listening to and implementing feedback from staff members.

‘Not only do the new guidelines offer an increased level of comfort, they also provide our team with more choice on how they want to express themselves at work,’ said Mark Anderson, Virgin Atlantic’s Executive Vice President of Customer, said in a statement.

The airline’s distinctive red uniform (first designed in 1984) got a makeover from the eccentric British fashion designer, Vivienne Westwood in 2014.

‘Our world-famous red uniform is something all of us at Virgin Atlantic are incredibly proud of. As an airline, we have always stood out from the crowd and done things differently to the rest of the industry. We want our uniform to truly reflect who we are as individuals while maintaining that famous Virgin Atlantic style,’ Anderson said.


Featured image: Pixabay

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